By Moe Lastfogel
Director of Sales and Marketing for The Retail Observer
Well, as usual, there was so much going on in Orlando, I was unable to stop by every booth or see every program. But what I did get to see got me very excited. Not only did the new products bring on the excitement but the upbeat attendees and exhibitors, the number of programs and features available, and the overall vibe of the show made this another amazing event.
The NKBA started the night before the show with a Gatsby-style awards and gala dinner held at the Rosen Centre Hotel. The presentation of awards was one of the most organized ceremonies that I have been to. As you will see in this current issue and the March issue, we will be highlighting the various award winners in bath design (February issue) and in kitchen design (March issue). There are some amazing projects and I congratulate all the designers for a job well done.
The show floor was packed, and I was told that attendee numbers were up. I could tell by how many people were in the booths, aisles, and walkways that indeed, the number of attendees had increased. There was a buzz in the air and a low deafening roar throughout the halls as manufacturers and attendees got together to discuss all the new products. Over the next few months, we will be showing you many of the new products and innovations that were launched at this year’s event.
Some moments that stood out to me were Hestan joining the ranks of the indoor kitchen with a full line of products and Perlick entering the cooking worldwhileaddingtotheiralreadysuccessfulrefrigerationlines. Manybrands completely revamped their lineups such as Bosch, Thermador, Bertazzoni, and Fulgor. Dacor, Monogram, Samsung, and Electrolux/Frigidaire also had booths full of new products to peruse. The new kid on the block—Signature Kitchen Suite—and LG made a statement by winning the Best Large Booth Award for the show. Range Craft surprised the attendees with a new counter drop-in dishwasher, much as Fotile did with their sink with a vegetable/fish wash station. I don’t have the space in my column to mention everyone that showed at this time, but as I wrote earlier, there is a lot of news we will be sharing in this issue and over the next few months. The NKBA and Emerald did a great job in bringing it all together.